In particular, David. He's severely handicapped. He has trouble communicating because of his jaw, so his speech is limited to just a few severely distorted words. Yes. No. Why?
But during the week, I got the chance to just hang out with him and really got to see the personality that's trapped inside his little body, and let me tell you, he's one funny little motherfucker.
We worked with all the kids on table manners the whole week. We went to sit down dinner every night, and we went through what silverware to use, and which glasses belonged to whom. We also worked alot on the 'don't eat until everyone is served' rule.
Well one night, the night I was beyond exhausted, I was the first one to get my soup and immediately dug in. None of the ADULTS said anything, because they all knew how whooped I was. But I looked up at David after my second bite, and he was doing the "shame shame shame" finger thing with his little arthritis bent fingers. It was priceless.
He had this way of asking questions without really speaking. My dad took a walk during lunch one afternoon, and David wanted to know where he went, so he pointed to the chair dad had been in, then raised his hands in the typical "I don't know" gesture and said a rather disjointed "Where?". And we actually carried on a (rather one sided) conversation about all the things my dad could be off doing.
In the week I spent with the kids, they went from "the kids" to individuals with personalities, senses of humor, likes, dislikes and most of all, smiles. I really enjoyed it when they smiled.
John, our awesome waiter, with David
A better person for having gone